The body of a man suspected of blowing up his Pennsylvania townhome and destroying two others Thursday was found beneath the rubble of his house about 12 hours after the explosion, police said Friday.
The remains of Thomas Razzi, 66, were identified by the Montgomery County Coroner’s Office after the body was found just before midnight Thursday. A cause of death has not yet been determined.
A code enforcement officer was performing a follow-up inspection at Razzi’s Eagleville house due to known hoarding conditions when Razzi brandished a firearm and then chased the officer, according to Lower Providence Township police.
When police arrived at the scene, Razzi went back into his house. Additional officers arrived to help form a perimeter around the house.
“A short time later, a series of loud explosions and gunfire was heard coming from the suspect’s residence,” said a statement from the Lower Providence Township Police Department. “Police believed that the suspect was the source of the explosions and gunfire and that he had intentionally started the fire.”
The fire spread quickly, and officers started evacuating neighbors as firefighters worked to get the blaze under control.
Three townhomes, including Razzi’s, were completely destroyed, and three others were damaged, police said. Those who were displaced have been accommodated.
Investigators believe the explosions were caused by chemical substances.
The code enforcement officer suffered minor injuries and was treated at a hospital, then released.
Neighbors told NBC Philadelphia that Razzi’s behavior had been erratic and he had been saying odd things in the past few weeks.
The station reported that three children — ages 6, 9 and 14 — were remote learning next door at the time of the explosions. They called their parents at work and police officers were able to rescue the children before the house was reduced to rubble.